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Trientine use while Breastfeeding

Drugs containing Trientine: Syprine

Trientine Levels and Effects while Breastfeeding

Summary of Use during Lactation

Limited information indicates that trientine is not detectable in breastmilk. The effect of trientine on breastmilk copper and zinc concentrations in milk is conflicting,[1][2][3] but breastfed infants appear to have normal serum copper and zinc plasma levels. Based on available data, it appears that trientine is acceptable to use during breastfeeding.

Drug Levels

Maternal Levels. Four patients received trientine for Wilson's disease in dosages of 1000, 1500 (2 patients) and 1750 mg daily. Trientine was not detectable by HPLC in the breastmilk of any of the mothers' milk samples.[1]

Infant Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.

Effects in Breastfed Infants

Three infants were breastfed during maternal treatment of Wilson's disease with trientine. Serum zinc and copper concentrations were normal in these infants.[3]

A center in Turkey reported 23 infants born to mothers with Wilson's disease over a 20-year period. One patient was treated with 600 mg of trientine plus 100 mg of zinc daily. All of the infants were breastfed (extent and duration not specified). One premature infant died at 3 weeks of age (maternal drug not specified), but the other infants had no apparent complications over a median of 51 months (range 13 to 105 months) of follow-up.[4]

Effects on Lactation and Breastmilk

Conflicting data exist on breastmilk concentrations of zinc and copper during therapy of Wilson's disease with trientine. One abstract reported that breastmilk concentrations were normal during therapy,[2] but another abstract from the same authors reported lower milk concentrations of zinc and copper.[1]

Alternate Drugs to Consider



1. Izumi Y. [Can mothers with Wilson's disease give her breast milk to their infant?]. Teikyo Med J. 2012;35:17-24.

2. Kaga F, Kodama H, Shiga K et al. Copper and zinc status in the breast milk of mothers with Wilson disease. J Inherit Metab Dis. 2008;31 (Suppl 1):157. Abstract. DOI: doi:10.1007/s10545-008-9975-0

3. Shiga K, Kaga H, Kodama H et al. Copper and zinc concentrations in the breast milk of mothers with Wilson disease and effects on infants. J Inherit Metab Dis. 2006;29 (Suppl 1):139. Abstract. DOI: doi:10.1007/s10545-006-9995-6

4. Demir K, Soyer OM, Karaca C et al. The course of pregnancy in Wilson's disease-one center, 20 years' experience. Gastroenterology. 2014;146:S-1009. Abstract TU1834.

Trientine Identification

Substance Name


CAS Registry Number


Drug Class

Chelating Agents

Administrative Information

LactMed Record Number


Last Revision Date



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